Love Cannot Die (III)

The sweetest voice that lips contain,
The sweetest thought that leaves the brain,
The sweetest feeling of the heart--
There's pleasure in its very smart.
The scent of rose and cinnamon
Is not like love remembered on;
In falsehood's enmity they lie
Who sin and tell us love can die.
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Remembrances (excerpt)

Summer's pleasures they are gone like to visions every one,
And the cloudy days of autumn and of winter cometh on.
I tried to call them back, but unbidden they are gone
Far away from heart and eye and forever far away.
Dear heart, and can it be that such raptures meet decay?
I thought them all eternal when by Langley Bush I lay,
I thought them joys eternal when I used to shout and play
On its bank at "clink and bandy," "chock" and "taw" and "ducking stone,"
Where silence sitteth now on the wild heath as her own
Like a ruin of the past all alone.

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Wood Pictures in Summer

Delicious Green (Carry Akroyd)

Here is the whole of Carry's painting that illustrates the following lines. Incidentally, postcards of it (and a number of other paintings) are available from Carry by post. Try

The one delicious green that now pervades
The woods and fields in endless lights and shades
And that deep softness of delicious hues
That overhead blends-softens-and subdues
The eye to extacy and fills the mind
With views and visions of enchanting kind
While on the velvet down beneath the swail
I sit on mossy stulp and broken rail
Or lean oer crippled gate by hugh old tree
Broken by boys disporting there at swee
While sunshine spread from an exaustless sky
Gives all things extacy as well as I
And all wood-swaily places even they
Are joys own tennants keeping holiday
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Letter in Verse

Delicious Green (Carry Akroyd) detail*

Like boys that run behind the loaded wain
For the mere joy of riding back again,
When summer from the meadow carts the hay
And school hours leave them half a day to play;
So I with leisure on three sides a sheet
Of foolscap dance with poesy's measured feet,
Just to ride post upon the wings of time
And kill a care, to friendship turned in rhyme.
The muse's gallop hurries me in sport
With much to read and little to divert,
And I, amused, with less of wit than will,
Run till I tire.--And so to cheat her still.
Like children running races who shall be
First in to touch the orchard wall or tree,
The last half way behind, by distance vext,
Turns short, determined to be first the next;
So now the muse has run me hard and long--
I'll leave at once her races and her song;
And, turning round, laugh at the letter's close
And beat her out by ending it in prose.

* One of Carry's screenprints of this wonderful painting hangs a few feet away in my study. (I was fortunate to get number 1 of 8)  Posted by Picasa

Love Cannot Die (II)

Twas born upon an angel's breast.
The softest dreams, the sweetest rest,
The brightest sun, the bluest sky,
Are love's own home and canopy.
The thought that cheers this heart of mine
Is that of love; love so divine
They sin who say in slander's breath
That love belongs to sin and death.
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Love Cannot Die (I)

In crime and enmity they lie
Who sin and tell us love can die,
Who say to us in slander's breath
That love belongs to sin and death.
From heaven it came on angel's wing
To bloom on earth, eternal spring;
In falsehood's enmity they lie
Who sin and tell us love can die.
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Field Path

[Helpston Heath]

The beams in blossom with their spots of jet
Smelt sweet as gardens wheresoever met;
The level meadow grass was in the swath;
The hedge briar rose hung right across the path,
White over with its flowers--the grass that lay
Bleaching beneath the twittering heat to hay
Smelt so deliciously, the puzzled bee
Went wondering where the honey sweets could be;
And passer-bye along the level rows
Stoopt down and whipt a bit beneath his nose.
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Bantry Bay

On the eighteenth of October we lay in Bantry Bay,
All ready to set sail, with a fresh and steady gale:
A fortnight and nine days we in the harbour lay,
And no breeze ever reached us or strained a single sail.
Three ships of war had we, and the great guns loaded all;
But our ships were dead and beaten that had never feared a foe.
The winds becalmed around us cared for no cannon ball;
They locked us in the harbour and would not let us go.

On the nineteenth of October, by eleven of the clock,
The sky turned black as midnight and a sudden storm came on--
Awful and sudden--and the cables felt the shock;
Our anchors they all broke away and every sheet was gone.
The guns fired off amid the strife, but little hope had we;
The billows broke above the ship and left us all below.
The crew with one consent cried "Bear further out to sea,"
But the waves obeyed no sailor's call, and we knew not where to go.

She foundered on a rock, while we clambered up the shrouds,
And staggered like a mountain drunk, wedged in the waves almost.
The red hot boiling billows foamed in the stooping clouds,
And in that fatal tempest the whole ship's crew were lost.
Have pity for poor mariners, ye landsmen, in a storm.
O think what they endure at sea while safe at home you stay.
All ye that sleep on beds at night in houses dry and warm,
O think upon the whole ship's crew, all lost at Bantry Bay.
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